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Properties of a new complex number-theoretic z-transform (CNT z-transform) over a finite ring are presented here and related to the usual z-transform. Using the Chinese remainder theorem, it is convenient to use finite rings that are isomorphic to the direct sum of finite or Galois fields of the form GF(q2) where q is a Mersenne prime. Many properties of the usual z-transform are preserved in the CNT z-transform. This transform is used in the present paper to design both recursive and nonrecursive FIR filters on a finite ring. The advantages of the FIR filter on a finite ring are the following: 1) the absence of a roundoff error build up in the computation of either the recursive or nonrecursive realization of the filter; 2) when the FIR filter is recursive, the question of stability does not arise as long as the magnitudes of the impulse response and the input sequence do not exceed their design values; 3) for the frequency sample representation of the FIR filter an absolute error bound on the impulse response function can be obtained in terms of the power spectrum. The time required to compute a nonrecursive FIR filter on the Galois field GF(q2), where q is a Mersenne prime, is competitive with the similar nonrecursive realization on the usual complex number field, using the FFT algorithm.